Feeling tired all the time poses a risk to all employees, colleagues and your business could suffer. Some might put it down to the ‘winter blues’ or because we tend to socialise more on the run up to the festive season. Whatever the reason, feeling exhausted is so common that being Tired All The Time has it’s own acronym; TATT.
Medical professionals see many patients every week suffering from TATT, but it’s unusual for them to find anything physically wrong. Most of the time, fatigue can be caused by a number of factors and is defined as a state of mental and/or physical exhaustion. It’s also often linked with mood and an accumulation of the stresses of home and work.
Tired All The Time & The Psychological Causes
Psychological tiredness is far more common than tiredness caused by a physical problem. Since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic the Mental Health Foundation has found that “more than a quarter of UK adults said the coronavirus had negatively affected how well they slept in the previous two weeks”.
Anxiety can cause insomnia and, in turn, lead to persistent fatigue and a feeling of being tired all the time. Mental health problems such as depression or anxiety can make you feel more tired. They can also prevent you from getting a proper night’s sleep.
Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
SAD is a physiological condition associated with lack of Vitamin D from sunlight. If workers are driving to work or walking to work in the dark, and leaving in the dark it can lead to a general lack of exposure to Vitamin D. It’s good practice to make sure employees are taking time out in the day to go outside so that productivity does not suffer. Sun lamps can also be be bought to minimise the affects of lack of sunlight throughout the winter months.
What happens if I don’t sleep?
Everyone has experienced the fatigue, short temper and lack of focus that often follow a poor night’s sleep. After several sleepless nights, the mental effects become more serious. Sleep deprivation can affect productivity and alertness, which can lead to the risk of an accident or injury occurring.
Tired All The Time & Costs to Businesses
The HSE accident figures for employees below show the actual cost to lives and businesses within Great Britain (2019/2020).
- 111 workers killed at work.
- 1.6 million working people suffering from a work-related illness.
- 693,000 injuries to employees reported under RIDDOR.
- 38.8 million working days lost due to work-related illness and workplace injury.
- £16.2 billion estimated cost of injuries and ill health from current working conditions (2018/2019).
Road traffic accident and fatality figures for the UK.
- In 2019 there were 1,752 reported road deaths.
- In 2019 there were 25,945 seriously injured causalities reported in road traffic accidents.
- In 2019 there were 125,461 slightly injured causalities reported in road traffic accidents.
Of these accidents how many of these can be attributed to employees feeling Tired All The Time and fatigued? How many were work driving related? It has been reported by campaigners that someone who is driving excessively tired poses the same level of risk to those who are drink driving.
Employers need to be mindful of the long-term impact anxiety and tiredness can have on their workforce and think before asking employees to work an extra hour or finish a job before leaving. The statistics speak for themselves; fatigue can increase the likelihood of accidents occurring.
Don’t struggle with safety issues on your own, let Wirehouse support your business. Get in touch with our Health and Safety Team today.